Cover image for Folly
King, Laurie R.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Prince Frederick, MD : Recorded Books, [2001]

Physical Description:
14 audio discs (16 hr.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in.
General Note:

Compact disc.
Format :
Audiobook on CD


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
XX(1159637.5) Adult Audiobook on CD Audiobooks

On Order




Author Notes

Laurie R. King is the bestselling author of "A Darker Place," four contemporary novels featuring Kate Martinelli, and five acclaimed Mary Russell mysteries. She lives in northern California. Her newest book is the ninth one in the Mary Russell mystery series, The Language of Bees.

(Publisher Provided) Laurie R. King is a mystery writer, who holds a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in theology. Her first novel, Grave Talent, was published in 1993 and won the Edgar Award for Best First Novel. Since then, she has written over twenty books including the Mary Russell Mysteries series, the Stuyvesant and Grey series, the Kate Martinelli Mystery series, A Darker Place, Folly, and Keeping Watch. She has also co-authored a number of nonfiction works and anthologies including Crime Writing, The Grand Game, and Studies in Sherlock.

Laurie's title, Dreaming Spies, is a 2015 New York Times Bestseller.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Are there such beings as "former" mental patients, or is it "once a nut case, always a nut case" ? At 52, woodworker/artist Rae has spent a lot of time on locked wards in psychiatric hospitals, imprisoned in grief, terror, and rage over the deaths of her second husband and tiny second daughter, and the rape-assault that closely followed the auto accident. Upon release, she takes her tenuously healed body and raw wound of a mind to a deserted island in the Pacific Northwest, where she sets up camp and starts restoring her shell-shocked great-uncle Desmond's fire-ravaged house. As seals and perhaps an Orca whale or two look on, Rae performs the obligatory scene of casting her antidepressants and tranquilizers into the sea, followed by the equally requisite discovery of--gasp!--a Friday-esque footprint. Have the Watchers that plagued her shattered mind in the hospital returned--in fleshly form? Despite some formulaic interludes, King keeps the pages turning in a tale that's sure to delight her fans. --Whitney Scott

Publisher's Weekly Review

Beautiful prose and intriguing characters can't quite save the confusing, and at times needlessly complicated, plot of this challenging psychological thriller, set on a fictional addition to the San Juan Island chain in Washington state, from Edgar-winner King. Talented, 52-year-old wood artist Rae Newborn suffers from severe depression, having survived several suicide attempts, as well as the death of her beloved second husband and their young daughter in a car crash. After being mugged by two strangers near her mainland home, Rae decides to wwork for healing by rebuilding the house called Folly that her great uncle, Desmond Newborn, constructed in the '20s as a way of mending his own war-wounded psyche. She capriciously dumps all her medications into Puget Sound, then lives in a tent while she digs and saws and chisels her way to bringing Folly and herself back to life. In uncovering and solving one murder, she works toward regaining sanity andÄperhapsÄlove. While King skillfully portrays psychological illness, the book's sheer complexity of detail is overwhelming. There's more mass than the average mind can keep straight, and the passages about rebuilding Folly, especially, have a tendency to bog down. The denouement is a bit hokey, though definitely more attention-grabbing than all the rest put together. (Feb. 27) Forecast: Fans of King's Mary Russell and Kate Martinelli series will ensure strong initial sales, as will some serious ad/promo and a preview in each paperback copy of Night Work, currently on sale. This is far from King's best work, though, and may turn off some of her fans, leading to poor word of mouth and a weakening of sales down the road. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

uncle's island home, intent on rebuilding both the house and her life. But this time, the sense that someone is watching her may be real. From the author of the award-winning A Grave Talent. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



In fact, Petra had not been the only passenger of the Orca Queen to look back at the sole resident of Folly Island. Petra Collins, last scion of the once-illustrious Newborn line, certainly looked the longest and waved the hardest at her beloved, bereft grandmother standing alone on the receding shore. The gel that spiked Petra's dark curls felt frozen onto her knit cap, and the puffy coat wrapping her slim, hard body was not really adequate. Poor, poor Gran, the child thought; she looks so lonely Oh man I wish I was as brave as she is all alone on an island with nobody to talk to except the seagulls, not even a dog, I mean I might think about it if I could take Bounce along like that book we read a couple years ago about the boy who runs away to go live in a dead tree in the woods and makes friends with a raccoon and a falcon, I wonder if Gran's island has raccoons? A falcon'd be so cool, though Oh poor Gran, I wish I could stay with her a while Oh jeez it's cold I wish I'd bought her that other hat, five bucks more but it would've been warmer for her she looks so old and cold and Bye Gran. Bye. Bye. The thoughts rattling through the mind of Tamara Collins were even less coherent than those of her thirteen-year-old daughter. She was struggling irritably to get her cigarette lit against the wind that flung the lighter's flame wildly about. On the way over, that wind had made her eyes water so badly she was now without any mascara, and she knew she looked a sight -- not that there was anyone to see her in this godforsaken hole. She finally got the cigarette going, and an instant before the boat rounded Folly's southeastern point, Tamara glanced involuntarily over her shoulder at her mother, standing proud and straight-backed on the promontory. A pang of sympathy, even pity, sneaked in before her mind came back on-line with Damn it, how long can it be before we get a call from the police or a hospital asking Do you know a Rae Newborn she was found -- pick one or more of the following -- a) raving at passersby b) starving to death c) bleeding to death Oh God maybe Don was right and we really ought to do something about her but that psychiatrist of hers said Mom has the right to do things that look crazy so long as they don't endanger her or anyone else but how can this not be considered dangerous? I mean, in this day and age what's to stop some nut -- some real nut, some violent nut -- from walking onto the island and Oh this is going nowhere, I'll have to have another talk with that psychiatrist Hunt, Dr. Hunt and tell her exactly what the situation is here, she can't have any idea Yes Don is right there's too much at stake and I never should have allowed Petra to skip a day of school to come on this fool's errand she's too young to understand and it's a mother's responsibility to protect her daughter just because my mother never did that doesn't mean Oh be fair she couldn't help herself, she never meant to abandon But if she's not responsible for her actions if she wasn't responsible thirty years ago and she wasn't last year either then why should she be allowed to do this completely irrational I mean they'd restrain some delusional person setting off for China in a rowboat how is this any different but No, Mom's not insane and certainly not like that just because she has been in the past but this really is crazy Well not crazy-insane but surely nuts and especially when there's so much at stake Don was right about that and would it really be so bad if we were to take the reins like he says take the reins of the estate and give her a monthly allowance and for sure keep a close eye on her I mean what if she decided to give it all away or something what about Petra? And there Mom stands straight as an arrow all pride and stubbornness and Damn it why do I always have to pick up the pieces for her she's the mother for Christ sake it drives me No it doesn't drive me crazy it makes me so angry something's got to be done here it's just too much it's just -- With that, the tree-covered island rose up and swallowed her mother, and Tamara was looking at nothing more exasperating than island and sea. She did not even know if what she felt was relief or sorrow. The third party on the Orca Queen was its owner, Ed De la Torre, waterborne taxi and delivery service, amateur philosopher, jack-of-all-trades -- particularly those trades frowned upon by the law. Ed was more or less impervious to the cold, his skin so toughened by sun and wind it wore like leather. Even the long, white mustaches, startling against the deep brown of his face, seemed barely to move in the gusts. Impervious, that was how Ed saw himself. And with that thought Ed, too, cast his sea-blue eyes back for a final glimpse of the odd figure he'd deposited on the shore of the uninhabited rock, a figure so lanky and so bundled up against the cold that a man couldn't even be sure of its sex. All alone with no boat and fast-moving water all around, and what would that be like, living with nobody but the birds, no roof but the sky? Old Henry David would've understood, but then he could walk into town, talk to his neighbors, even had family practically within shouting distance. Hell, I've lived on the Queen for weeks at a time, but I can't remember ever going more'n two or three days without stopping in at a bar or a marina or something. Thomas Merton, now maybe there was a man who'd explain the attraction. It's been a while since I read Merton, maybe I'll dig him out again, see what the crazy monk has to say about solitude. 'Course, even Merton didn't do that great with solitude. It distracted him, made him forget about the possibility of bad wiring in Third World appliances, so he got careless and electrocuted himself. You could say his solitude killed him. God knows it'd kill me. Alone, at last. Rae stood beneath the sagging tarpaulin roof, the knapsack gaping open in front of her, and raised her head, abruptly aware of the sheer size of all that solitude pressing in on her flimsy shelter. For the first time -- the first of many, she well knew -- cold fear trickled into her heart. What the hell am I doing? I mean, I've done a lot of loony things, but this really takes the cake. I should've been locked up, they should've thrown away the key, how can I possibly -- She brought herself up short. This was no way to begin. She'd known it would be hard, but hard was the only solution. From the Hardcover edition. Excerpted from Folly by Laurie R. King All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.